Also known as Garden Sage. Red Sage. Broad-leaved White Sage
Sage is an everygreen perennial shrub which reaches a height of 75cm. It is a popular herb and is most traditionally used in stuffings. Sage is used in a number of dishes including meat, fish and mediterranean dishes. Common Sage (Salvia officinalis) is used medicinally as a antisceptic and is used as a gargle for laryngitis and tonsillitis.
There are a number of varieties of sage, some of them culinary, some medicinal and some purely decorative.
Salvia africana coerulea
Blue sage is an indigenous perennial with green oval leaves. It also has blue flowers. It enjoys full sun and grows well in well-drained soil. It reaches a height of 1.5m. It is widely used as an ornamental herb as it attracts both butterfiles and bees. It is also medicinally used to treat excess sweating and fungal infections. It is also used to help treat coughs and whooping cough.
Brown sage is an indigenous perennial which has grey, oval leaves and chocolate brown flowers. It reaches a height of 1.5cm and like most Sa;via's enjoys full sun and well-drained soil. It is also medicinally used to treat excess sweating and fungal infections. It is also used to help treat coughs and whooping cough.
Clary sage has large grey-green leaves and flowers in three-coloured spikes (white, pink and violet). Interestingly, men find the flowers to have an unattractive scent which women find it attractive. It is largely used as an ornamental herb athough it does contain substances useful for treating throat infections or gum disorders.
Pineapple sage is a large perennial shrub which has tubular red flowers that smell similar to pineapple. Pineapple sage is used in fruit cordeals and attracts a myriad of wildlife including sunbirds and hummingbirds. Medicinally, pineapple sage has antidepressant and antianxiety properties.
Salvia officinalis ‘Purpurascens’
Purple Sage enjoys full sun and well-drained soil. Used in meat dishes, soups, stuffing, sausage. It has also been known to aid in digestion
Old fashioned Sage
Old fashioned sage has beautiful purple and white flowers which have a soft, velvet texture. It is a highly ornamental herb which attracts butterflies and bees. It grows best in well-drained soil and full-sun. This perennial requires minimal watering and can withstand light frost. Like many sage varieties it reaches a height of 1m+.
Mexican sage is a very attractive herb with dark, oval leaves and swathes of blue flowers. It grows well in full sun and well-drained soil, needing a small amount of water. It reaches a height of 1m. The leaves of the mexican sage are used in a drink called Chia. It also makes an excellent landscaping plant as it attracts a host of butterfiles and bees.
Red sage has dark, aromatic oval leaves and swathes of red flowers. This hardy sage grows well in well-drained soil and full sun. It can reach up to a height of 1m. The leaves make an excellent addition to potpourri and is a lovely landscaping shrub.
Salvia officinalis tricolour
Tricolour sage is a very attractive perennial and a definite feature piece in anyone's herb garden. Like all its sister varieties Tricolour sage enjoys full sun and dry, well-drained soil. A smaller variety, it reaches a height of 30cm. Tricolour, like salvia officinalis, can be used in cooking and medicinally as an antifungal, oestrogenic herb.
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